News Worms
News Worms


Iraq kills Daesh commander, captures Mosul bridge

Iraq kills Daesh commander, captures Mosul bridge

Speaking on Tuesday, Prime Minster Haider al-Abadi said that the military operation aimed at liberating western Mosul was "in its last stage".

Lieutenant Raed Shakir Jawdat, the commander of the federal police, said in a statement that his forces have added the train station as well as a nearby bus station to that list, both of which are located southwest of Mosul's Old City.

Iraqi troops have effectively sealed off Mosul from the rest of the territory IS controls in Iraq and Syria.

Daesh snipers were slowing the advance of Interior Ministry's federal police Rapid Response units, formed by recruiting Iran-backed Shia jihadists, on the Iron Bridge linking western and eastern Mosul but the elite forces managed to take the bridge earlier this morning.

Losing the city would be a huge blow to IS as it has served as the group's de facto capital since its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi proclaimed himself - from the Grand Mosque - head of a caliphate covering Iraq and Syria in the summer of 2014. The southernmost two have already been retaken.

Fighting to drive Daesh from western Mosul, its last major stronghold in Iraq, has involved close-quarter street battles, with Iraqi forces advancing block by block as they approach the most densely populated parts of the city.

"This will have risky repercussions on the post-Mosul phase.there will be anger by residents and Daesh will benefit from the large human losses", he added, using an Arabic acronym for Daesh.

Tens of thousands of people have streamed out of west Mosul since February 25, and security forces are searching for IS jihadists trying to sneak out of the city among civilians.

Some have been taken by army trucks to processing areas but many have to wait.

Until the latest phase of the battle to take western Mosul, the campaign had gone well with lower-than-expected civilian losses, Khanjar said crediting the professionalism of the United States trained elite forces.

"We are facing stiff resistance from Daesh fighters with snipers and mortars", an Iraqi official said.

While changes do seem to have been made, the HRW allegations indicate that significant problems remain with screening procedures - problems that breed anger and resentment that drives more people into the arms of militants.

The International Organisation for Migration said more than 200,000 people have been displaced by fighting in Iraq's second largest city since the start of the Mosul offensive in October. While the Islamic State is known to use men, women, and children as human shields in Mosul, the city's residents have also accused the coalition of indiscriminate bombing.

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